After Protest, LRS-B Ramp-Up To Be Slow

Assuming the protest over the Long-Range Strike Bomber award goes Northrop Grumman’s? way, the company expects “modest” sales money from the program in 2016, attending a “gradual, month-by-month increase” in employment on the project, company CEO and president Wes Bush said Thursday. Speaking during a conference call with reporters to discuss the company’s 2015 fourth-quarter results, Bush said the LRS-B “head count” in engineering will increase at a rate “appropriate for the start of this incentive-based program.” The Government Accountability Office is expected to decide within two weeks whether the LRS-B award to Northrop was, as Boeing argued in its protest, “fatally flawed.” Bush expressed confidence the protest would be resolved in Northrop’s favor and that the stop-work order would be lifted shortly thereafter. The program represents a “meaningful opportunity for the company over time,” he added. Northrop was selected to build the LRS-B by the Air Force in October, and Bush said the company remains heavily restricted in what it can say about the program. (For more on Northrop’s fourth quarter earnings, click here.)